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The Killing Curse can be used by Hogwarts Legacy players

Hogwarts Legacy’s first gameplay trailer shows off a lot of what players can expect to be doing in-game, including killing. 

Hogwarts Legacy has released a large gameplay trailer showing off the game ahead of its release later this year. When designing its own version of Hogwarts castle, the game appears to be taking more inspiration from the Harry Potter books than from the films. Most likely, this is to make it more explorable for players, but also because the films never had an consistently laid out castle. The Great Hall and the castle’s largest tower were clearly influenced by the films, as was the soundtrack.

In both the books and films, witches and wizards had to follow the same set of rules. However, it appears that Hogwarts Legacy as an open-world RPG will allow players to break these laws.

Harry Potter’s universe has some rules that can be a bit confusing at times, as with any fiction that uses magic as a key element. The world mostly holds together in a consistently inconsistent “it’s magic” kind of way. According to the books, the only hard and fast rule for witches and wizards is that three spells can never be forgiven. Among these spells, the killing curse is a major plot point in Harry Potter, and it is quite brazenly showcased as a weapon in the Hogwarts Legacy gameplay trailer.

The trailer hints at a mechanic that tracks the player character’s moral alignment based upon which quests or locations they take on. There could be a mechanic similar to the lightside/darkside choices found in Knights of the Old Republic. Making evil choices consistently will eventually lead to the player learning the killing curse.

Despite this spell’s iconic status, it is unlikely that the game will allow the player’s custom Hogwarts character to use it freely in the game’s world like the other less deadly spells. The way this curse is built up in the Harry Potter books means that no spin-off story could use it lightly. The gameplay reveal may represent the end of a major battle or quest line, or even the main story line, and the player character may be forced to use it.

Game trailers and gameplay reveals have a history of giving away more than they are supposed to. It is often the case with Nintendo games whose trailers contain spoilers that have huge fan bases that will pore over every frame for details. Perhaps the killing curse in the Hogwarts Legacy trailer is partly a spoiler, rather than something players can expect to use on a regular basis.

Hogwarts Legacy will be available on PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S in Holiday 2022.

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